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Teaching Skills Teaching Skills > Teaching Troubleshooting > Guitar Teaching Tips > The art of doing nothing
Summary: Bite-sized chunks of wisdom that you can use to sharpen your teaching skills and increase your awareness.

The art of doing nothing

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By far the most common fault shared by inexperienced tutors is that they overteach.

By overteaching we mostly mean that they give instructions where none are needed. All the time the student is engaged with the subject - playing the guitar or figuring out an answer to a question you are best advised to just sit and do nothing. Give the student time and space to engage in their own learning process.

The only time to interrupt a student in the middle of carrying out an exercise is when they are doing the exercise so wrongly that they are unlikely to benefit from it at all. Otherwise, wait until the student shows signs of extroverting their attention. These signs vary from student to student. Some will stop doing the exercise on their own accord. Some will look up. Some will make a comment that indicates that they are ready to proceed to the next stage.

So remember - more is less. Strive to perfect the noble art of doing nothing. It's not as easy as it sounds!

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